Over its decade and a half of existence, Q-Flow has evolved not only in terms of features and performance. What started out as a software product focused on managing in-store customer flow, turned into a suite of multiple modules with V4, and then became the foundation for an ever growing set of solutions with the V5.x family.
With V6, Q-Flow emerges as a proper development platform, which supports the delivery of all familiar existing Q-nomy solutions, as well as an endless range of enhancements, uses and applications, continuously added by channeling the imagination of our developers, partners, and customers.
Q-Flow V5 already provided a great deal of customization options, such as system scripts, UI styling and functional modifications, and plenty of system parameters to play with. Yet there is something radically different in Q-Flow 6 that makes it a very powerful platform.
The difference lies in Q-Flow 6's "killer app"—"Q-App" to be precise. Q-Apps are a new system of packaging Q-Flow customizations together as a single, complete project, that can be tested, deployed, upgraded and rolled-back, and then shared and re-used. A Q-App can include any combination of system scripts, parameter changes, UI templates, SQL code, external interfaces, and so on – in short any component that makes up the required solution.
Why is that such a big deal?
From a structural point-of-view, this is how developers prefer to work. Instead of having to manage a large collection of loosely-linked components, working with a Q-App, which is a single packaged project, is a much-preferred method. It reduces the amount of work required to manage, deploy and test projects, and greatly improves the end-product’s quality by ensuring no required components are lost in transit.
Furthermore, the reduced effort and easier packaging makes customization a viable option for organizations. Previously, many of our clients favored "out-of-the-box" functionality, but now they can easily try out new options and put them to use quickly, with few, if any, obstacles. Q-nomy customers can expect to benefit from innovative solutions that will give them an extra competitive edge.
An additional motivation for Q-App developers is the potential to commercialize their efforts. A Q-App developed by one organization can easily be offered to other organizations, at commercial terms as would be determined by the application developer.
To maximize the potential for Q-App sharing and commercialization, Q-nomy plans to launch an online Q-App Marketplace in mid-year 2017. The marketplace will contain Q‑Apps tested and certified by Q-nomy, thus enabling our partners and customers to look up, purchase, and download applications suitable for their local requirements.
We believe by offering Q-Apps, we are turning Q-Flow into an optimal platform for developing solutions connecting omni-channel customer journeys, experiences, and supporting back-office processes. It is way more flexible than any other software solution on the market; Yet the abundance of best practices and built-in functionality implemented in Q-Flow make it a lot more focused and efficient to use than any general-purpose development platform.